The subterranean slumber of Nile mastermind Karl Sanders' Eastern-ambient Saurian series finally ceases with the third chapter of his darkly hypnotizing saga, Saurian Apocalypse! The album's musical and lyrical themes detail the vexing fictional journey of Dr.
Eduardo Lucciani, one of very few survivors of mankind's self-destruction, who descends into madness after discovering the violent horrors occurring at the hands of the Saurian Masters.
Emphasized by unique instruments like the baglama saz (Turkish lute), Ancient Egyptian Anubis Sistrum, Dumbek (Middle Eastern goblet drum), glissentar and gongs, the album's score weaves cinematic auras and deep grooves, accented by the tribal percussive stylings of original Nile drummer Pete Hammoura and returning Saurian vocalist Mike Breazeale.
Whispering atop the ominous sands of opener "The Sun Has Set on the Age of Man" are resonant flutes, forewarning percussion, and an exquisitely tasteful and contextual acoustic guest solo by guitar virtuoso Rusty Cooley - kicking in the massive doors of Saurian Apocalypse.
Immediately, the album's impactful production and crystal clarity versus its predecessors is apparent.
Produced by Sanders with mixing and mastering by Simone Mularoni at Domination Studio, the most subtle details of instrumentation shine.
Next track "The Disembodied Yet Slither Among Us" peaks between soulful acoustic guitar renderings and droning tones, before "The Evil Inherent in All of Us", featuring another uniquely thematic axe contribution by Cooley, surfaces as an energetic jam and standout departure from the Saurian blueprint.
"Skull Fuck Ritual (Skull Breach Edition)" begins eerily with a cautionary chime before its marching drums make way for Middle Eastern-inspired leads, bridging the journey to 6+ minute desolating trek "Nada Zaag".
Fans will hear an alluring Oud (Middle Eastern lute) solo by Mustafa Stefan Dill and rare acoustic jazz drums by current Nile percussion goliath George Kollias on "An Altered Saurian Theta State", before seductive auditory excursion "Nihil Emplexus" and its iridescent strums and ominous chants signal the beginning of the end.
Sitar-like sounds immediately ensnare the listener on "Divergence: The Long Awaited Third Primordial Ascension" before hopeful lutes make way for heart wrenching electric shred.
Far Eastern stylings creep in on "Mask of Immutable Self Delusion", a tranquil moment of atmospheric bliss, before the album closes with 10 minute epic "No Creature More Deserving of Cataclysmic Annihilation" - featuring the deft skills of jazz guitarist Matthew Kay and the panicked, incensed narration of Jonathan "ADD" Garofoli as Dr.
Eduardo Lucciani himself.
Honed to crystalline distillation in the years between 2009's Exorcisms and the current Apocalypse, a wealth of musical and growth and refinement, both in Sanders' guitar technique and compositional development, is strikingly evident.